Going for the Gold with Sedums

February 27, 2011 by admin

Three chartreuse sedums you will find at these Home Depot Garden Centers this spring will offer you new choices to cover the ground and feature plants, garden ornaments and collectibles. The chartreuse color of these hardy succulents contrasts with many of the colors of the flowers, foliage and objects you have in the garden.


Sedum Florida Friendly Gold is quickly becoming one of the most popular perennials for it’s striking color and wide range of use possibilities in the full sun and even in a setting where you get shifting or filtered shade all day.




Sedum Florida Friendly Gold is also available in convenient 9 pack trays.


Use them as a unifying ground cover in front of the garden border or along your home or garden fence border where you feature other showy plants. You can also use it to Shrink the Size of Your Lawn.


Sedums and succulents are great combination planter components that can thrive on neglect.



Sedum Fine Leaf Gold is a beautiful container plant that spreads and fills to make a solid carpet with an appealing texture.



Sedum Ogon as a container plant that fills, contrasts and cascades in your containers. Extremely easy to grow and share.



Durability and low maintenance are another reason to weave these low growers into your garden.

These sedums work well as pot toppers and SPILLERS in your container gardens.



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Florida Friendly Pumpkin Patch

October 20, 2010 by Rick

Gardeners are getting so clever with pumpkins these days. In Florida it is tough to grow pumpkins of any size with our summer heat and rain. A clever idea I have seen is to grow Ornamental Sweet Potatoes as a permanent easy to care for ground cover and place your pumpkins, gourds and corn stalks as if the vines had actually produced your crop. These imitation pumpkin vines contrast nicely with pumpkins or gourds and easily fool the untrained eye. For even more contrast you can add a colorful border to contain and frame your pumpkin patch by edging it with SausEdge.

Let your imagination run and look at some of these Links:


Pumpkin 1                Pumpkin 2                      Pumpkin 3                              Pumpkin 4


Another idea is to grow your Ornamental Sweet Potatoes in large containers as SPILLERS and arrange them on your front porch or patio with pumpkins and other colorful containers of Crotons as FILLERS and ornamental grass as THRILLERS. Try orange or black coleus for additional seasonal color that last longer than mums.

 Ornamental Sweet Potato Persian Shaield Combo

Add some Muhly Grass to your display and later plant if in a sunny spot in the garden. I also have a wonderful friend and great gardener, Janis, whose nickname is Pumpkin and here is her Blog.

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Leu Gardens is Always Stunning - even in July

July 23, 2010 by Rick


Disney has beautiful gardens that amaze visitors for days but for a combination of beauty and diversity of plants, The Harry P. Leu Gardens is the crown jewel of Orlando and Central Florida.

Just as you wouldn’t miss the Chicago Botanical Gardens in the windy city, you shouldn’t miss this Botanical Mecca if you visit our state. Allow plenty of time, wear comfortable shoes and bring extra batteries for your camera.


Robert Bowden is the director and fellow committee member who showed the FNGLA marketing team the highlights and stunning views and garden rooms.



Click this link to our Facebook Album for more Leu Garden Images.

RFF Donar Sign Perennials Leu Gardens 7-21-2010 2-53-23 PM




Leu Gardens features many potted specimens and combination planters. They use the Thriller-Filler-Spiller concept to demonstrate how to make a beautiful container garden you would be happy to have on your porch or patio.


Profusion Zinnias are a disease resistant type on display throughout many sunny spots in the garden. The butterflies were plentiful and highly attracted to these zinnias.


Weddings are a big thing at Leu Gardens. They are booked over a year out. They have excellent facilities for multiple weddings and are located near downtown and near I-4 for easy access.


The largest formal rose garden in the south is a central feature of Leu Gardens.

Photographers flock to this garden to take images of plants and flowers that are used in magazines and books published all over the world. Fashion photographers find many beautiful settings at this garden.

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St Bernard’s Lily a Tough Grass Like-Plant

May 1, 2010 by Rick

Saint Bernard's Lily - Anthericum saundersiae. This grass-like plant has long, narrow leaves that are dark green forming a clump with upright arching leaves.


Showy white flowers with yellow stamens persist throughout the year. Give it well drained soil and it grows to 3 feet or less. We have found that if you cut it to the ground every other year it sprouts back rejuvenated and to a similar size quickly. Use it as a 'THRILLER' in the center of a large combination planter for a long lived and trouble free focal plant. Mass plantings are very attractive especially when they are flowering heavily.


Clumps are well behaved and dependable. St Bernard’s Lily can thrive on rainfall alone once it is established. It will grow rapidly and flower more with some irrigation and fertilizer if you feel the need.


Anthericum tolerates a fair amount of shade and will grow as a companion to shade lovers like Impatiens and Persian Shield. Here is a link to the Top 10 Florida Friendly Shade Tolerant Plants.

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Brazilian Red Hots are in Most Fl Home Depots Now

April 20, 2010 by Rick


Common Name: Brazilian Red Hots Alternanthera

Colors: Pink Red Variegated

Who would have guessed this plant would become one of the most popular new plants for Florida gardeners? We get more requests for this plant and more reports of how well it performed than any other plant we grow. That is saying a lot. It really stands out and is so easy to grow. It has it’s best coloration in the full sun but can grow in partially shaded areas very well. 

Image Title

The information below is from our searchable database. http://floridafriendlyplants.com/plant_database.asp


Optimal Light:
Mature Height:

Light Range:
Full/Part Sun
Mature Spread:

Soil Moisture:
Well-drained to Medium
Soil Texture:

Salt Tolerance:

Florida Native:
Florida Region:

Drought Tolerance:
Hardiness Zone:

Season of Color:

Brazilian Red Hots - Alternanthera dentata 'Brazilian Red Hots', a Josephs Coat - grows 20 to 28 inches tall, and up to 18 inches wide and is trouble-free in full sun or partial shade. The bright foliage of this new favorite perennial for the Florida Friendly garden has been a welcome addition to garden designers. They stand tall in containers for sunny locations and make a great THRILLER component. Once established it is fairly drought tolerant. The color is most vibrant in full sun. Ball shaped white flowers stretch out above the foliage in mid winter. Cut these back as the days become longer in early spring for a vigorous flush of color. 1 Gallon Pots are available at most Home Depot garden centers today. Brazilian Red Hots is a great tall edging plant for your garden beds and is also available in the Warm Season in our Innovative SausEdge format for easy planting and an instant manicured look.

Brazilian Red Hots SausEdge

Check out the SausEdge video. You can 'slice your SausEdge' into smaller 'links' and stretch your dollars and get the same look and performance and more value. The hot pink and rose shades make these plants adaptable to use with cool or warm colors. They can be the 'THRILLER' in stunning and long lasting perennial combination containers mixed with Lantana, Pentas and many other sun loving annuals.


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Categories: 9 Principles of Florida Friendly Landscaping | SausEdge get the edge on your beds.. | 9 Principles of Florida Friendly Landscaping | SausEdge get the edge on your beds.. | SausEdge TM | SausEdge TM | Thriller-Filler-Spiller Design Concept | Thriller-Filler-Spiller Design Concept
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Persian Shield, a Popular, Dependable Shimmering Star

April 7, 2010 by Rick


Persian Shield Strobilanthus dyuranus

Persian Shield – Strobilanthes dyerianus, is native to Myanmar and survives as a long lived easy to care for perennial in the right place in your garden. It is one of the Top 20 Florida Perennials and very suited to our subtropical climate and usually pest and problem free. It is nearly always available at Florida Home Depot Garden centers in the south and after freezing weather chances pass in north Florida. Not more than 3 hours of direct sun and less if you can fit it in a shady place. It likes Florida’s heat and humidity. Too much moisture and shade and it will stretch tall and tend to fall over in the heavy summer winds we get with afternoon storms. Pinch and the plant will stay full and bushy. To Pinch or Not to Pinch…



In South Florida, this Persian Shield barely noticed the few frosty nights. In central Florida, 80-90% of the tops were frozen and in North Florida I have not heard that so many survived this unusually cold winter.


Persian Shield is a dependable THRILLER component to containers designed to accent a shady part of your garden or patio.


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Categories: Container Gardening | Design | Florida Friendly Landscape | Thriller-Filler-Spiller Design Concept | 9 Principles of Florida Friendly Landscaping
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Time for a Little Pot-in-Pot Creativity

March 23, 2010 by Rick

If you want to change your annuals in your containers with the season or change them with Easter Lilies and maybe hardy mums in the fall and poinsettias at Christmas try this method.

Reasons to use this method:

  1. where you have container perennials and want to add seasonal annuals
  2. where you have container perennials and want to add holiday poinsettias
  3. where you have container perennials and don’t want disturb the root systems
  4. where you have container perennials and want move them to a different location and change the color theme with a different annual
  5. where you want to save time in refreshing your containers
  6. where you want to add a tender annual before the last frost free date and have the option to lift and protect it
  7. where you need the ability to experiment with color in the design

Here is the link to the earlier Pot-in-Pot for Container Gardening post with more images and ideas.

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Categories: Container Gardening | Design | Pot-in-Pot Landscaping | Thriller-Filler-Spiller Design Concept
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2009 Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival

February 21, 2010 by Rick

Looking back at 2009’s Flower Festival helps us get more great ideas we can enjoy in our own gardens. Check out the Ornamental Sweet Potatoes used in this cleaver display as a pumpkin patch



This year we will have new Ornamental Sweet Potato varieties called “Bright Ideas”. They will be available with Lime (chartreuse), Black and Rusty Red foliage. Plant them in the spring or summer and then place your pumpkins in the foliage for a fall pumpkin patch display. They will be available in April at most Florida Home Depot garden centers.


 Bright Ideas

Ornamental Sweet Potatoes make great container and hanging basket plants. They are a SPILLER element in combination planters. Use the colors to echo colors in flowers or as contrast elements to make them pop.


2010 will surely be a great year at EPCOT for the Flowers. They just get better every year. Penny and Kim are talking a lot about the upcoming EPCOT Flower and Garden Festival on their blog over at The Dirt and in the Getaway section of the Tampa Tribune next Sunday.


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Beautiful Water-Wise Garden

October 29, 2009 by Rick

Pamela Crawford's Water-Wise Garden in Georgia is going to be featured in a spring issue of Southern Living.

Pamela wrote several Florida books while living in south Florida. Here is a link to her special containers, videos, books and designs.


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The Gardens of Montrose

October 11, 2009 by Rick

Montrose is a Sponsored Project Garden of The Garden Conservancy. This garden exudes design, color and imagination. You can purchase unusual plants they feature on their open garden days. Near Chapel Hill, N C.

Getting there....

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